Danville School Board, Teachers’ Union Reviewing Arbitration Report
Thursday, February, 12, 2015
The Danville School Board and the Danville Education Association (DEA) have each received a copy of an arbitration report with official recommendations from the arbitrator regarding a new contract for the teachers in the district. Both sides now have 10 days to respond to the report, either accepting or rejecting the recommendations. If either side rejects the findings, the next step might be a strike by the teachers.
The school board has scheduled a private session to review the findings, and the specifics of the report will not be revealed to the public until after both sides have had opportunity to review it. The DEA has not officially acknowledged receipt, though the arbitrator confirmed that the DEA president had been supplied with the report at the same time as the school board.
If both sides accept all recommendations, the arbitrator’s report automatically becomes the contract of record between the two sides. The DEA’s members have been working at the school district without a contract since the summer of 2012, an unusually long time to go between contracts. Arbitration was seen as the last best hope of resolving the contractual dispute that has grown into a lengthy and increasingly bitter battle over compensation and benefits.
The DEA staged a 5-day strike in 2014 in protest of the slow progress of new contract negotiations. If either side rejects the arbitration recommendations, the DEA would be legally allowed to organize a new strike action. Alternatively, if the two sides are open to most of the arbitrator recommendations, they can opt to return to the negotiating table.